Amsterdam's 'Nightlife Mayor' Wants To Revolutionize The Future Of Los Angeles Nightlife

Mirik Milan "It's not that authorities are attacking dance music, they just don't know what the cultural value is so that's where we come in."

Back in September, California lawmakers corked Senate Bill 384, a proposal to extend bar operating hours until 4 a.m. Some of the document's primary arguments highlighted a potential economic boost for local vendors as well as preventing young adults from moving to unsafe or illegal spaces after venue closing hours. 

But this isn't the end of the road, especially if Mirik Milan, former party promoter turned Amsterdam's "Nightlife Mayor" in 2012, is able to introduce the central European hub's realistic and successful policies to L.A. officials. Admittedly, Milan, whose radical nightlife project has influenced many of the world's major party meccas such as London, Berlin and, most recently, New York City, understands "Los Angeles is a tough city to crack." So, he can't do this alone.

During a recent trip to Southern California, Milan met with many nightclub operators and nightlife influencers in the L.A. area as well as the city's Mayor of Economic Development to begin inaugural conversations. Part of his week-long visit included a panel chat with prominent L.A. night figures David Ambrose, President of Los Angeles Planning Commission; Elizabeth Peterson, CEO of Elizabeth Peterson Group and A Club Called Rhonda co-founder, Loren Granich. The room filled to capacity with journalists, dance music tastemakers and nightlife enthusiasts seemed overwhelmingly on board to move forward with this push to put Los Angeles on the map of must-visit global nightlife destinations and to create a cohesive working relationship between municipality and venue operators and promoters. 

Before the open forum discussion at local venue Neuehouse, Milan dropped by Billboard to expand upon the reception of his introductory visit, limiting policing, cost effective methods for taxpayers, and even a more realistic approach to inevitable alcohol and drug use inside clubs.

How did you get involved as "Night Mayor" of Amsterdam?

I was elected in 2012, back then it was voluntary position. The title of "Night Mayor" was already there for more than ten years but it was never really taken seriously, it was more like a cool title people gave. I'm the eyes and the ears of the Mayor by night, we work really closely with his office and his door is always open to us so this gives us lots of access to make sure the right people are at the table when these decisions are made. What we do is city planning at night, which is a field that is pretty new actually. The knowledge of the good operators of the city is at the table when these decisions are being made so that City Hall isn't policing their failures. 

How did you get officials to take the nightlife's importance and benefit seriously?

When I started, I immediately understood if you want to have real impact in the city -- I think we're always fighting for getting acknowledgement, for the cultural and creative value that our subculture of nightlife creates for the city. What we want to do is influence the system-making on a higher level. I felt we needed to create this independent, not-for-profit outfit. Make it really transparent and really try to get the nightlife scene and operators unified and working together, to come together with a shared vision and propose this to city hall to also get their support. We really work as an advocate for nightlife, but we're also a partner of City Hall as well. 

You can read Milan's full interview with Billboard Magazine here.

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Both Londoners and visitors will have even more excuse to stay out late and keep the party going as the city’s overground trains will soon operate 24 hours a day at the weekends. Dubbed the ‘Night Overground’, the extended services will start on Friday 15 December.

The London Overground runs through much of Greater London but for now, the new night service will be restricted to East London. The Night Overground will run between Dalston Junction in Hackney to New Cross Gate in Lewisham and will be extended to Whitechapel in summer 2018 once works there are complete.

In a statement, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “I’m delighted that we can bring night services to the East London line for the first time ever next month. The Night Tube has proven such a success with Londoners, I know the Night Overground will help thousands more who are working through the night or out enjoying our capital’s nightlife.”

The new lines will undoubtedly be an incentive for more visitors to explore the thriving nightlife and culture scene of the city’s East End and has already been met with excitement from people working in the area’s creative industry. Jen Bartle from East London’s Independent Arts Centre said the Overground “has enabled us to better connect with audiences, creative people and businesses across the capital as well as the local communities we serve.

“The launch of London Overground night services will enable more people to experience our programme of activities and will help support a responsible approach to the development of the night-time economy.”

London’s Night Tube launched in August 2016 and was running on five lines by December last year. More than eight million people used it in its first year and it’s estimated has boosted the city’s economy by £171 million already. The new 24 hour overground services connect with the Night Tube at the Jubilee Line and will eventually link up with the Victoria line next year.

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D.C. council considers commission devoted to city's nightlife


Washington, D.C. has become an entertainment town and now the city council is considering putting together a commission focusing on nightlife.

According to economic partnership figures, the number of bars and restaurants in the District soared from 800 in 2008 to 1,300 in 2016.

The increase in bars and restaurants led to a surge in the city's job growth.

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Mumbai likely to get 50 rooftop joints by December

Mumbai: In a major decision, the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has cleared the decks permitting restaurants, bars and cafes on rooftops of buildings, officials said here on Wednesday.

The development comes after long efforts made by Hotel & Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI) and Indian Hotels & Restaurants Association (AHAR) and Yuva Sena President Aditya Thackeray, with the state government and the BMC.

Lauding the decision, HRAWI president Dilip Datwani said it would unlock the huge potential that terraces offer by allowing them to be operated as leisure or recreational spaces.

"The sky-bars and rooftop cafes are an emerging trend around the world, and Mumbai despite being the commercial capital of India, lacked the policy on this. It will be appreciated by Mumbaikars besides domestic and international tourists," said Datwani, whose HRAWI has a membership of over 2,000-star hotels and restaurants.

With a membership of over 8,000 restaurants and bars, AHAR's Adarsh Shetty said the industry has been pursuing this proposal since years and now finally the authorities have given the green signal to it.

"This is a privilege for Mumbai and the city will join the ranks of cities like London, Hong Kong, Bangkok which have beautiful skylines and some of the best rooftop restaurants in the world," he said.

Earlier, there were a few clubs or private parties allowed on rooftops against payment of daily licence fees of around Rs 15,000, which was scrapped permanently two months ago.

Shetty said that by December, at least 50 rooftop joints, especially those in the vicinity of the Arabian Sea, are likely to come up as they would offer dazzling views of the city, besides reduced noise and air pollution from the traffic below and beating space constraints.

As per the BMC policy, permissions would be granted to open-air terraces, in full or part, except on refuge floors of commercial buildings, malls, hotels having eating houses and lodging services, without causing a nuisance to the occupants.

The owners cannot claim the terrace areas as habitable commercial areas approved by the BMC while submitting any redevelopment proposals in future, and no cooking or preparations would be allowed with LPG or open flames.

All other rules shall be applicable as per the Mumbai Police Act and the BMC's Shops & Establishments Act, and the licensees would be liable to take proper safety and security measures on such premises.




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The International Nightlife Association is deeply moved to hear about the shooting that took place this past evening in Las Vegas. On behalf of the nightlife community, the International Nightlife Association, member of the World Tourism Organisation (OMT), we would like to express our deepest condolences to the family and victims, and hope the injured make a full recovery. Since the attacks that took place last New Year’s Eve in club Reina in Istanbul, we would like to remark the importance of increasing security measures in all venues that carry out nightlife activities. 

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Days ago it was confirmed that the mayor of Valparaiso, Jorge Sharp, appointed a night delegate who will be in charge of coordinating security measures in the commune, a kind of guardian of the Buenos Aires nights, after a series of episodes of violence that have occurred in the commune.

And today finally confirmed who will be in charge: Juan Carlos Gonzalez Gonzalez. The signing of Sharp is originally from Santiago although in the commune it is known because it was the owner of Deck 00 in the pier Barón, place where realized celebrated electronic parties.

According to El Mercurio published in Valparaíso, the nocturnal businessman had several controversies with the neighbors and with the own municipality - previously led by the UDI Jorge Castro - by the fines with which they were sanctioned by annoying noises and by different denunciations.

Gonzalez and Sharp are close. In fact, the first made a call several times by social networks to vote for the current mayor of the Autonomist Movement and has supported him in his initiatives in the municipality.

According to the media, the owners of bars in Valparaíso say that their experience in Buenos Aires bohemia can be a great help in the position, since it knows the operation and dynamics of the item, which would allow a fluid dialogue with the authority.

González is also a well-known opponent of the construction of the Mall Baron, who with Sharp when he was a candidate with the architect Daniel Morales (now councilman), accompanied González to file a protection against the company, because he alleged, Suspended the supply of energy and water illegally when he occupied the space for electronic parties.


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The International Nightlife Association is deeply moved to hear about the terrorist attacks that took place last night at the Manchester Arena in Manchester. On behalf of the nightlife community, the International Nightlife Association, member of the World Tourism Organisation (OMT), we would like to express our deepest condolences to the family and victims, and hope the injured make a full recovery. Since the attacks that took place last New Year’s Eve in club Reina in Istanbul, we would like to remark the importance of increasing security measures in all venues that carry out nightlife activities. 

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